Sunday, 30 August 2015

Wasaga Beach Olympic Triathlon: 3'rd OA: 2:04:28

It was a tough race in Wasaga this weekend, and it was probably one of my toughest, if not the toughest race of the season.  The race wasn't mentally as difficult as my race in Welland or even as physically difficult, but it was very hard nonetheless.
The Bolton triathletes

Raffi and I before the race

I have raced Wasaga a lot in the past, and this was the first time in a while we actually got to swim (instead of the race being converted to Duathlon).  I was kinda hoping for a wavy swim (just for the experience), and I definitely got my wish.  The waves were huge, making sighting and swimming straight incredibly difficult.  My main goal was to avoid swallowing any water and to stay as relaxed as possible.  I was pretty far back from Alex after the swim.
Finally out of the water

Running up to T1
I came out of the water with Jackson, and I managed to stick with his pace.  He is a strong cyclist, and I was on my limit trying to stay with him.  We caught up to Alex after maybe 20km and put a decent size gap on him.  I was hoping to maybe get bike bonus points by coming into T2 first, but Jack had the same idea, and he was 13 seconds ahead of me into T2.

Here's where the race went sideways.  I tossed my bike on the rack, put on my running shoes, and took off after Jack.  Unfortunately, within my first few strides, I stepped on a wetsuit, which slid out underneath my foot.  Next thing I knew, I was lying on my back on the pavement.  It was kind of a surreal experience.  I knew I was hurting, but I also knew Jack was running away from me.  I got up quickly and ran after him, but after about 400m, I had to left hip was really hurting and I could hardly move without pain.

My best running form of the race

Alex caught me soon after, and yelled out a bit of encouragement.  I knew I had to try and finish, so I ran at whatever pace I could muster.  I settled into this limp run of sorts, and just gutted it out...I crossed the line third.

At least I finished

I'm glad I could finish and get a decent result for the club championship to support Mettle Multisport.   I'm still hurting today, and have some nice cuts and bruises (I'm not putting a picture of my bruised behind on the internet for you though).  Hopefully It heals up quick, and I'll be good to go for Barrelman.

My friend Raffi was also racing, and also had a crash...except he fell on the bike.  Coincidently, we both landed hard on our left sides.  Vicky was also there as our official photographer, but she ended up taking on a larger role as she took care of us injured triathletes.

As usual, thanks to my sponsors Multisport Canada, eLoad nutrition, and Nineteen wetsuits.  Big thanks to all my coaches, friends, and family as well for their support.  Also a big congratulations to all the Mettle athletes!
The season is almost done.  Time to get healed up and ready for Barrelman!

Tuesday, 25 August 2015

Toronto Island Sprint Triathlon: 59:30, 2nd OA

The triathlon season is quickly coming to a close, so it was nice to be out racing close to home this weekend for a race on Toronto Island.  I have been training and racing hard this year and have stayed injury free, but as is expected with a triathlon season, fatigue does start to catch up with you.  After my last race in Kingston (where I was DQ'd), I was feeling pretty tired and unmotivated to train, so I decided to scrap any plans for hard training, and took a couple weeks of light/no training.  This resulted in a lot of spare time, and gave me a chance to catch up on some of my other summer projects.

My last post showed the rusty's the after as well
So lets talk about the race.  I headed to the island with my girlfriend Catalina and my good friends Raffi and Vicky (Catalina and Raffi also raced the sprint).  It was fun taking the ferry over to the race, but it did leave us a bit tight for time.  I got to the start line on time, but only got in about a 1 minute swim warmup.

CN tower shot


The water wasn't too cold, and I had no problems swimming up at the front of the race.  Myself and fellow MSC ambassador team member Mikael Staer Nathan led the swim, and the pace was pretty chill.  We exited the swim with a couple other racers, and since the timing mat was up near transistion (which was a few hundred meters away), I ran hard to lead across the mat and pick up the points for the fastest swim.
Warming up in Nineteen Frequency


The bike course was very flat, and consisted of two laps back and forth across the island.  The ride did nothing to separate Mikael and I, and just put the two of us in a comfortable position up in front. 
Looking aero and fast


I had a bit of an issue getting my race belt on in transition...the bib got stuck in my bike wheel and pulled off one of the cord locks holding it in place.  This small delay allowed Mikael to get out of T2 first, and with a fast acceleration, he pulled ahead.  I chased hard, and ran pretty well, but I couldn't catch him, and crossed the line in second.
Running in for 2'nd

Man-hugging it out


I was pretty happy with this race.  I find I enjoy the races a lot more when there is strong competition and there is a heated battle for the win.  I was feeling a lot better as time off training helped a lot, and I'm now feeling good going into the home stretch of the season.

Catalina and Raffi also had strong races.  Catalina came first in her AG and Raffi put together a solid performance for his first race of the year.  My dad and brother also raced on the island this weekend, but in the tri-a-tri on Saturday.  My dad came first in his AG, and my brother came 2'nd OA!!!  Its great to see everyone racing well and having fun!!  Vicky was also excellent as photographer/cheerleader, and my mom was great as she woke up early to make me breakfast before the race.

As usual, a big thanks for Multisport Canada for putting on a great event.  Setting up a race on the island is logistically quite challenging, but it was run very smoothly.
A big thanks also goes to eLoad for their continued support in keeping me fuelled in racing and training.  Thanks also to Nineteen Wetsuits for their support and for keeping me swimming well in the open water!

The season is almost over, but I'll be racing at Barrelman to finish out the season.  Its a great late season half, and should be a nice way to end the summer.  Worth checking out!

Monday, 3 August 2015

MSC Kingston Long Course Triathlon-DQ

I'm going to start this blog post talking about razors.  I like razors...especially sharp ones.  My particular favourite is my straight razor...not only is it super sharp, but it leaves my face baby smooth (and aero for race day).
This weekend I was in Kingston for the long course triathlon.  During my time in the city, I stopped by the flea market and actually found an old straight razor.  This particular razor was dull and covered in rust, but I saw the potential for it to be awesome... it was high quality metal with bone scales...definitely a winner.

My newest razor for the collection

Now you may wonder why I wanted to talk about a rusty old razor to start this post.  One of the reasons is because the race in Kingston didn't really go so well.  I kinda had this thing where I missed a turn, and then got DQ right before the finish line.  Lets just say a sign for a turn on the bike was very small and unclear (with no other indicators given that this was a turn), and both myself and race leader Jordan Monnink missed the turn.  Off course=DQ for the 2 race leaders.
I did pretty much finish the race (save the 100m at the end), and for the time I was racing, I was feeling great.

Now lets bring this together...razors and triathlon.  Razor cuts are not a good thing (especially on such a handsome face).  But shaving with a straight blade has its risks, and cuts are going to happen.  Similar situation with triathlon.  Getting a DQ is not a good thing.  However nothing is ever certain in racing, and almost anything can happen on race day.
This weekend, it was a missed turn.  Was I fully to blame?  Definitely debatable.  Does it change the fact that I cut the course?  Nope.

 I'm not going to say I wasn't upset with my DQ...I was definitely not happy.  Kinda like when I cut my face in shaving...upset and not happy.  But shaving cuts aren't going to stop me from straight fact they just make me strive to get better (and buy more razors).  Similarly DQ's aren't going to stop me from racing, and I can only aim to improve.  As is the situation in both, you initially say some not nice words, but then re-assess why something went wrong.  Although nothing is a guarantee, hopefully the next time, you go in a bit wiser and walk away unscathed.

I finished the race, but they didn't count my time
2 race leaders and 2 DQ's

A big thanks to Multisport Canada for their support and for adopting this race into their schedule.  Although I wasn't happy with course signage, I know next year they are going to make sure that turn is clear.
Continued thanks to my family for their support (and cheers this weekend).  Also thanks to my sponsors eLoad nutrition for keeping me hydrated on a hot day, and to Nineteen Wetsuits for keeping me comfortable in choppy water.